Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


The birth notice.

Ring. Ring.

Hello, classifieds?

Yes, I'd like to place an ad.

Pardon me? The 'Celebrations' or 'Milestones' section? It's a birth notice, so I suppose it could be in either. You decide. It's your newspaper.

You'd like to start with the surname? Sure. It's spelt K - E - ... pardon me? Larger point size? To make it more prominent? It's a birth notice, not a used car ad. (PAUSE) No, I'd feel like I was putting all those other new babies in the shade if we ran the surname in 72 point. Thanks anyway.

The text? Sure. I'll read it out to you.

... born October 23. Thanks to all at ... excuse me? 2006? Yes, I do know it's 2006. I wouldn't be placing the ad if the baby was born in any other year, would I? (PAUSE) They what? People like to cut out the ad and blow it up and place it on the wall and that way they know what year the baby was born? I see. I think. Then again, I suppose people forget their children's names as well.

OK, now, the baby's name: it's spelt T - H - O - ... excuse me? (PAUSE) Oh, probably not the calligraphy or the double spacing either side, thank you. I really don't think so. I mean, it might suit names like Tahliah Jayyde or Yasmiina Juanah or Talullah Venezianah Pomeraniah or Edgegrass Brunel Highcliffe III for that matter but does Thomas Brian sound like it needs a flowery italic calligraphy with rococo flourishes and baroque curlicues to you? No, I didn't think so. It's a nice strong bold dignifed name and it needs a nice strong bold dignified typeface. (PAUSE) Pardon me? They all want the calligraphy and the spacing? Yeah, I know, I tried to read the birth notices once and the page had eighteen different typefaces, twenty-three point sizes and fifty different line drawings of love hearts, fat cherubs, cooing doves and flying storks and it looked like someone had dropped a box of hot metal type and a book of clip art into the printing press.

(PAUSE, THEN JUST A TINGE OF EXASPERATION CREEPING IN. WELL, I WAS TIRED) A what to finish with? A logo? A logo? It's a birth notice, lady, not an ad for a can of tomatoes. (PAUSE) Some people like to have their favourite football team's logo with the words 'I'm a little Collingwood Magpie' in the ad? But he might not want to be a little Magpie. He might want to be a little Hawk or a little West Coast Eagle or a little North Melbourne Kangaroo or a little Bulldog or a Carlton Blue. He might even hate football. He hasn't decided yet. He's only a day old.


Oh yes, I'm getting the hang of this placing a birth notice business.

A few more children and I'll be an expert.


rowena said...

Congratulations on the birth of your 2nd son! Ah, the sweet scent of a newborn baby...something that as a mother of only one son, will never ever forget!

Red dirt mummy said...

Congrats on the arrival of baby Thomas. He is very gorgeous!

My mum did the birth notices for all the grandies - we wrote them and she put them in the paper as one of her many gifts when the baby/babies were born. Yay mum! I didn't realise what she had saved me from LOL.

kimbofo said...


This post made me laugh out loud! ;0

kitchen hand said...

Thank you, Kimbofo.